Sustaining Community in a Heritage Boomtown. Kaslo, British Columbia
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This thesis explores how architecture can help sustain community in a tourism-based heritage “boomtown”. Many “boomtown” communities either no longer exist, or have become shadows of their former selves. Those communities that do remain (having survived the boom-bust cycle) often struggle to stabilize their fragile economies. This fragility often places them at risk of losing the values they hold dear: community, culture, heritage and the environment. There are many communities which share these values and have endured the massive socio-economic shifts associated with “boomtowns”. The primary focus of this thesis however is the Village of Kaslo, a quintessential “boomtown” community located in the south east corner of British Columbia, Canada. Using Kaslo as a model for this thesis, the research demonstrates the capacity of architecture to enhance social sustainability and “sense of community”. It investigates how Kaslo’s history, including it’s architectural history, can inspire and enhance future development.